AAA: @ Colorado Springs Sky Sox (COL) 8, Las Vegas 51s 7
The Sox scored twice in the bottom of the ninth against the combination of Greg Peavey and recently acquired Sean Henn, neither of whom recorded an out. Peavey allowed a pair of singles to start the inning, Penn walked the bases loaded and then allowed the game-winning single to LF Tyler Colvin.
The two teams combined on 15 runs, 32 hits (!) all in a brisk 3:33. So add this to the “Yay, PCL!” column.
Jamie Hoffman, a Terry Collins’ favorite, had the best offensive day for Vegas, going 2-for-4 with a double and 3 RBI. The 28-year-old is hitting .289/.319/.467 in 13 games with two walks and 10 whiffs.
CF Juan Lagares was 1-for-5 with a homer, his third of 2013 to push his season line to .346/.378/.551 and threw out a runner at the plate. If the Mets decide they need a right-handed hitting outfielder, Lagares and Hoffman are the top two internal choices. Lagares holds a number of advantages: he’s younger, on the 40-man roster and better defensively. Still, I suspect the Mets would like to see the 24-year-old Lagares, who has always been an aggressive hitter become more selective at the plate as his walk rate sits at 4.8% right now.
Collin McHugh was PCL’ed: 5.1 IP, 13 H, 4 R 4 ER, 0 BB, 3 K. He threw 71% of his pitches for strikes (63 of 89). Seven of the 13 hits he allowed were ground balls and 12 of the 13 were singles. In 23.1 innings thus far, he’s fanned 18 and walked only four.
AA: Binghamton Mets 15, @ New Hampshire Fisher Cats (TOR) 2
Hey, look a PCL game broke out in the Granite State.
LF Alonzo Harris had a monster day: 4-5, BB, 2 R, 2 RBI, 3 SB. The 24-year-old is now sitting at .286/.315/.386 while going six-for-eight stealing bases in the season’s first 16 games.
RF Cory Vaughn was 3-for-6 with three singles to push his season line to .298/.365/.526 in 15 games. For what it’s worth, he’s 7-for-15 (.467) against lefties with a triple and a homer, while hitting .238 (10-for-42) with four extra-base hits against rights. SSS and all, but extreme platoon splits have been a theme for Vaughn in the last few years.
Big C Blake Forsythe was 1-for-3 with a double. Playing in a little under half of the team’s games, he’s off to a 8-for-22 start (.364) with five extra-base hits for a .727 slugging percentage. There’s certainly power in his strong frame, but I wasn’t sure that there was enough of everything else. He will get more playing time to prove it with Juan Centeno in AAA.
- Ted Berg at USA Today has a wonderful in-depth look at how difficult Las Vegas is for player development thanks to its offensive friendly ways.
A few great quotes:
“Breaking balls don’t break that well,” 51s manager Wally Backman says. “Guys come in who are supposed to have good breaking balls, and the breaking ball isn’t doing much. The high altitude has an effect on all that stuff.”
J.P. Ricciardi, who had Las Vegas as the team’s AAA affiliate when he was with the Blue Jays addressed adjusting a pitchers’ stats.
You’re not going to come out of there with a 2.70 or a 3.10, 3.20 ERA. You’re probably going to have to add a run a game,” he says. “But it still comes down to if you’re executing. If you’re making your pitches and you’re doing what you’re supposed to do, that’s how you’re going to be evaluated.
- And to make things worse, it’s been windy in Vegas recently and the 51s are doing what they can to adjust writes Paul Delos Santos in the Las Vegas Sun. According to 51s manager Wally Backman: “The last seven home runs that were hit here for the last two or three days, six of them were just pop-ups on a normal day.”
AAA: Colorado Springs Sky Sox (COL) 19, @ Las Vegas 51s 5
The wind was blowing out at Cashman Field and the two teams combined on 24 runs, 28 hits, four homers and 15 walks in an action-packed 3:24. The 51s also committed six errors. PCL Baseball!
Chris Schwinden started and wore a whole bunch of that damage – yielding eight runs, four earned including two homers in 3.2 innings. Adam Kolarek, recently promoted from AA Binghamton had a rough one as well: 2 IP, 4 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 1 BB, 1 K, 1 HR. The 51s ended the game with position player Eric Campbell on the hill – he too gave up four runs in an inning.
The good news for Vegas came mostly at the plate. C Travis d’Anaud (pictured) had five plate appearances: all ended with one of the three true outcomes: with one homer, one strikeout and three walks. The homerun was his first of 2013, the walks were his 10th, 11th and 12th to push his line to .300/.488/.567 in 10 games for the 24-year old.
Wilmer Flores was 3-for-5 with a strikeout while playing thirdbase for the first time after nine games at second base. The 21-year old is hitting .289/.346/.378 in his 12 contests five walks and just three whiffs. He did commit an error, his third of the year.
CF Juan Lagares was 2-for-5 with a triple and two RBI at the top of the order to extend his hitting streak to eight games. In 11 games, he’s hitting a batting average-heavy .346/.370/.519 with four extra-base hits.
Flores playing third for a night opened up second for Reese Havens (.276/.333/.310 – 10 games), who was 0-for-5.
Once again Robert Brender contributes this from Vegas.
Poor starting pitching put the Las Vegas 51s in a hole they couldn’t dig out of, falling for the 2nd straight night to the Colorado Springs Sky Sox 11-6 in front of 5,848 at Cashman Field.
Tonight, Darin Gorski (0-1) was the victim of the hot-hitting Sox, surrendering five runs (all earned) in just two innings, collecting the loss. Gorski had difficulty with command, walking four in his brief outing and throwing 72 pitches, 38 for strikes (53%).
Gorski’s final line: 2 IP, 6 H, 5 R, 5 ER, 4 BB, 0 K. Woof.
As they did Friday night, the Sky Sox (6-3) sent all nine batters to the plate in the opening inning, scoring three times. Back to back doubles from Nolan Arenado and Ryan Wheeler started a run of five consecutive batters to reach in the frame. Nine of the Sky Sox 17 hits went for extra bases.
The Las Vegas bats made a charge in the middle innings, scoring all six runs between the 3rd and 5th. Travis d”Arnaud and Wilmer Flores had two doubles each in the game. d’Arnaud crushed a pair of line drives off the 20’ high wall in left field, coming just a few feet shy of homeruns each time. He drove in two runs on the night and now has six runs batted in this season.
Josh Satin continued his red-hot start, going 2 for 3 with 3 RBI, including a long 2-run homerun in the 5th inning off Colorado Springs starter Drew Pomeranz. Satin has now hit safely in nine of 10 games this season and has a club leading 4 long-balls to go with 12 RBI.
Pomeranz (1-0) was the benefactor of great run support, collecting the win despite allowing six runs (all earned) in five innings.
Trailing 8-6 in the bottom of the 7th inning, the 51s (5-5) loaded the bases with nobody out against Sky Sox reliever Manuel Corpas. However, two shallow fly balls from Zach Lutz and pinch hitter Jamie Hoffmann followed by a Reese Havens strike out got Corpas out of the jam without surrendering a run. The 51s would not get any closer as Colorado Springs tacked on a single run in the 6th and three more in the 8th.
Six Las Vegas pitchers combined to allow 11 runs and 17 hits, the highest total for a 51s opponent in each category this season. Every starting position player for both teams reached base at least once.
AAA: Las Vegas 51s 14, Fresno Grizzlies 3
An efficient Vegas offense, helped by four (!) Fresno errors scored 12 runs in the first three innings on their way to a two touchdown performance.
Perhaps more important than the 51s’ hit parade was Collin McHugh’s performance. McHugh (pictured) allowed two unearned runs thanks to a Juan Lagares error, on four hits in seven innings, did not walk a batter and struck out five. In 12.1 innings over two starts, McHugh has allowed eight hits and a walk while fanning 12. Remember, the Mets are asking both Aaron Laffey and Jeremy Hefner to hold down starting spots. McHugh will get his shot to stick at the back of the Mets’ rotation soon enough.
Back to the offense. CF Juan Lagares was 3-for-6 with a leadoff homer in the top of the first to get the party started. LF Zach Lutz was 2-for-5 with a grand slam. Lagares has used four multi-hit games in a row to lift his seven0game average to .333 (11 H/33 AB). 1B Josh Satin was 2-for-3 with two doubles and a walk. With seven mutli-hit games in eight contests, Satin is hitting .500/.543/.906 (16-for-32).
C Travis d’Arnaud was 2-for-5 with two measly singles. By the way, he’s drawn seven walks in six games.
AA: New Hampshire Fisher Cats 3, @ Binghamton Mets 1
On a cold April night, the ‘Cats ruined the B-Mets’ home opener.
Logan Verrett: 7 IP, 7 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 3 K, 1 HR, 1 WP. Amazin’ Avenue’s Jeffrey Paternostro braved the cold to report that Verrett was mostly working the high 80s, hit 90+ a “handful” and topped out at 92 and threw his slider a lot in the middle innings. That all sounds just about right. Verrett has fanned five of the 49 batters he has faced (10%) in his 13 innings this year. That’s not enough.
3B Josh Rodriguez had two of Binghamton’s three hits. LF Cory Vaughn off to a 3-for-22 start (.136) had the other.
AAA: @ Fresno Grizzlies (SF) 6, Las Vegas 51s 3
Bad: Chris Schwinden did not give his 51s a chance in this one: 4 IP, 8 H, 6 R, 6 ER, 0 BB, 3 K, 3 HR.
Good: Josh Satin (pictured) homered again, his third already in a 2-for-4 night while lifting his batting average to .483/.516/.862 (!) after a week’s worth of play.
Interesting: Where the 51s played.
Wilmer Flores played second as he has in each of the five games in which he has played in the field. Reese Havens has shifted to third when Flores plays second, a pattern that has happened twice. Zach Lutz played left field for the second time and the outfield for the third time overall. Flores had a slow week, going 4-for-21 with a double, but the good news is that he walked five times and struck out just once for an odd-looking .190/.321/.238 line. Lutz too; he was 3-for-22 with two doubles for a .136/.227/.231 line. Again, seven games. Havens has hit five singles in 14 AB for a .357/.412/.357 beginning.
So Flores will never play third for the Mets, so they’re trying to figure out if he can play second. Havens and Lutz need to learn to play multiple positions if they will ever help a big league roster. And Josh Satin only plays first.
AA: Binghamton Mets 1, @ Erie SeaWolves (DET) 0 (suspended mid-4)
They’ll pick this one up on August 9. I wonder how many of the starting 18 for both teams will still be available by August 9.
Cory Mazzoni got three scoreless innings of work in with three strikeouts and a walk.
AAA: @ Fresno Grizzlies 4, Las Vegas 51s 1
The Zack Wheeler show made its second stop of the 2013 season in Fresno on Tuesday. The results: 5.1 IP, 8 H 4 R, 1 ER, 3 BB, 6 K. Wheeler threw 68% of his pitches (62 of 93) for strikes. The 22 year old has now walked six batters in 8.2 innings this year a rate of 14%.
For some reason, despite installing the new Flash player, my computer was not cooperating last night, and I could not pull up the video feed of Wheeler’s start and the 51s. Oh well. Marc Carig in Newsday points out that five of the eight hits Wheeler allowed came on two strike counts. Carig reports that this was “an indication of the pitcher’s difficulties in putting away opposing hitters. He could also blame his lack of fastball command, which was enough to get him in trouble despite secondary offerings that were mostly sharp.”
The Fresno Bee had Wheeler regularly touching 97 mph. Carig’s observations about Wheeler’s command issues mesh with the tweets of friends of the site and twitter-aholics like Jeff Paternostro and Daniel Wexler. Wheeler’s fastball command issues are not new.
CF Juan Lagares had a pair of singles and a pair of strikeouts. With three-straight two-hit games, he’s up to .296/.321/.333 (8-for-27) this year in his six games.
Meanwhile, Josh Satin remains totally locked in. The 28-year old 1B was 2-for-4 with a homer, his second of the year. He’s had multiple hits in every single one of his six games while bopping at a .480/.519/.800 rate to start the year. So that’s nice.
My old friend, and Fresno Grizzlies broadcaster Doug Greenwald passed along his call of Satin’s homer which is below.
Satin HR 409
AA: @ Akron Aeros (CLE) 13, Binghamton Mets 3
Tyler Pill allowed one run through the first five innings. Then he began the sixth, allowed three singles and a walk to load the bases and score a run, and his night was done. Mark Cohoon allowed all three inherited runners to score. Pill’s final line: 5 IP, 5 H, 5 R, 4 ER, 2 BB, K.
In addition to three of Pill’s runs, Cohoon gave up five of his own to turn a close game into a blowout.
Once again, Alonzo Harris played center, Darrell Ceciliani played left, and Cesar Puello played right. I would dub this lineup, with Cory Vaughn or Puello in right, the B-Mets standard now. It’s a fairly remarkable turn from last April, when Harris was the fourth outfielder behind the other three, and the third choice in center behind Puello and Ceciliani. Harris earned this on the field: in 2012, he hit .287/.354/.424 with 40 stolen bases and showed the speed to play center. For what it’s worth (not much) he’s hit safely in each of his first four games, going 5-for-17 (.294) with two doubles and a walk.
After sitting on Friday, Ceciliani had back-to-back two-hit games over the weekend with a double in each.
AAA: @ Sacramento RiverCats 8, Las Vegas 51s 4
Carlos Torres started and did this: 5.2 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 3 BB, 3 K.
CF Juan Lagares collected his first two-hit game of the season and his first extra-base hit, a double.
Reese Havens started at second while Wilmer Flores DHed. each had one hit.
AAA: Las Vegas 51s 6, @ Sacramento RiverCats (OAK) 1
Collin McHugh was sharp to help the 51s improve to 3-0. McHugh’s line: 5.1 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 7 K. He threw 60% of his pitches for strikes (56 of 93).
Offensively, the big names (Juan Lagares, Travis d’Arnaud and Wilmer Flores) were all o-for. Instead, the offense came from SS Brian Bixler (2B, 3B), DH Andrew Brown (3-for-4), Josh Satin (HR, 2 RBI) and Jamie Hoffman (3-for-3, BB). I got the feeling that Terry Collins really likes Hoffman during spring training. If the Mets’ outfield is unproductive, he’d be on Collins’ replacements list.
AA: Binghamton Mets 7, @ Akron Aeros (CLE) 5
Darrell Ceciliani played centerfield for the first time in three games, while Alonzo Harris shifted to left, Cory Vaughn played right, and Cesar Puello had the night off. All three starting outfielders were productive. Harris was 2-for-4 with a double, his second, and a walk. Ceciliani was 2-for-5 with a double and a triple, while Cory Vaughn was 2-for-4 with a triple, a walk and a stolen base.
Logan Verrett was ok in his AA debut: 6 IP, 4 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 2 BB, 2 K, 1 HR
AAA: Las Vegas 51s 9, Sacramento RiverCats 3
The RiverCats played some a-ball level defense which led to a five-run Vegas third inning that removed much of the suspense from this game early.
Notable offensive performances:
C Travis d’Arnaud: 1-for-2, 3 BB.
– The only statistical blemish in d’Arnaud’s performance in the last two years in AA and AAA has been his walk rate – under 7% last year in AAA, so it’s especially nice to see him being this patient early.
Game two in AAA is already Chris Schwinden time, and he was very Schwindeny: 5.2 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 0 BB, 1 K.
AA: Binghamton Mets 1, Akron Aeros (CLE) 1
The B-Mets scored the go-ahead run in the seventh on a dropped popup.
Cory Mazzoni had a nice start: 5 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 7 K. Watch his strikeout rate really closely in 2013. His seven strikeouts tied a AA-high he achieved once in 14 starts in 2012.
For the second game in a row, Alonzo Harris lined up in CF, with Cory Vaughn in LF and Cesar Puello in RF. Harris was 1-for-4.
LHP Jack Leathersich fanned two and walked two in the ninth for his first AA save. His walk rate has climbed as he’s moved through the minors.